salmon with lemon

it surprises me sometimes when i'm talking to people about food, the apprehension i often hear about cooking fish, as if the method is difficult, mysterious, . . . or fishy. but i think it's one of the easiest and most elegant entrees to bring to the table. we eat fish several times a week.
     an effortless way to make almost any type of fish is to give it a squeeze of fresh lemon, and then cook it in the oven at 400 degrees. no need to turn it, baste it, or worry. it needs just a few minutes to marinate in the lemon juice, and cooks in less than 15 minutes.
have the fish market cut the fillets into 1 or 1 and 1/2 lb. pieces, to it make it easier to handle and cook. when i make a larger piece for a dinner party, i use the bottom of the broiler pan which will hold two 14" pieces. and the grill is ideal for cooking a large whole fish.
• about a 1 & 1/2 lb. salmon fillet
• high heat oil (safflower)
• 1 lemon
1 rinse the fish with cold water and pat it dry with a paper towel. 
2. coat the bottom of a large stainless skillet with the oil.
3. lay the salmon fillet, skin side down, on top of the oil.
4. squeeze the lemon juice over the fish and let it sit about 15 min.
5. heat the oven to 400 degrees.
6. sprinkle the fish with kosher salt and crack some pepper over it.
7. put the pan in the oven and cook about 12 minutes. check for doneness with a fork- the center should be just opaque. if it's not, let it cook a minute or two more.
8. lay it on plate coated first with a favorite sauce, try this zucchini coulis: or make a reduction by pouring a little white wine into the pan after removing the fish and the skin. simmer on a med-hi flame, stirring it with a whisk, until it reduces. pour the reduction over the fish.

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